tv NBC 10 News Today at 11a NBC February 24, 2015 11:00am-12:01pm EST
nbc 10 breaking news. >> right now at 11:00, we're following several breaking stories. first an amber alert renanzmains in effect. we're following breaking news on the main line. an accident at a car dealership on lancaster avenue in ardmore involving five cars there. skyforce10 was over the scene over an hour ago. one woman was hurt in that accident. and this is a look from skyforce10 as it is flying to more breaking news in stafford township, ocean county where we are just learning that there has been a house explosion following a gas leak there. two people haveslñ been injured according to the township
administrator. they may have been utility workers. the immediate area has been evacuated. we know that much. we'll bring you a live picture as soon as we get there. and ted greenberg is on his way to the scene there. good morning, i'm vai sikahema. first the breaking news about the amber alert. the intense search for a father and daughter which now spans over three states. 3-year-old elinor trotta weighs about 60 pounds has shoulder length brown hair and was last seen wargearing a purple puffy coat, pink pants and frozen sneakers. police say elinor was taken by this man michael trotta 5'8", 160 pounds, balding with a scruffy beard and mustache. he was last seen wearing all black clothing and police believe the girl may be in danger. nbc 10's tim furlong is live at new castle where a news crew -- a news conference is about to begin. tim, what else can you tell us? >> reporter: vai we're at the
new castle county police department. we're waiting for a news conference that could start any minute. here is what we know at this point. last night police were called to the school side apartments not far from here in new castle. they were called for a domestic assault. when they got there, they found a woman saying her daughter had been taken away by her father. that is when the amber alert was issued. as of this morning, take a look again at the person they're looking for. michael trotta take a good look at him. he's 5'8", 160 pounds traveling with his 3-year-old daughter elinor. police believe she could be in imminent danger. that's why this amber alert is out there. police are looking for a mazda. that's the description they put out last night. if you watched nbc 10 news this morning, our crew happened to have live picture of a police towing a car away at that point. it turned out as they looked closer, that was the car they were looking for. now at this point police believe trotta is driving a bright red suv, possibly a ford explorer. they believe he was last seen in
mount laurel new jersey last night. and, again, they haven't given us any details of that specific sighting and who found that but they believe he could be headed to new york city. that area where he has relatives. as we come back live here we're starting to see the colonel here in new castle county. county executives everybody is filing in now. we're ready to start this news conference. and, again, as soon as it begins we'll bring you back here live. stick around with us here. be patient. we'll get this thing started, hopefully get more information and hopefully get this little girl home. back to you. more breaking news an accident involving a jeep and several cars at the acura dealership on lancaster avenue in ardmore. you're seeing skyforce10 over the scene at around 9:40 this morning. police say this started when a woman lost control of her jeep, went over a guardrail and landed on top of three cars at this dealership. she's being treated for injuries. no one else there was hurt. we're following a developing story in the kensington section
of philadelphia, where fire crews have been battling a three alarm fire for much of the morning. nbc 10's jesse gary is live on the scene with an update for us. what can you tell us? >> reporter: within the past couple of minutes, you started hearing the rumble of the market frank ford el subway overhead. septa resumed service. the train is not stopping at the york dauphin station. firefighters in the distance trying to tap out the last of this blaze. late this morning, smoke still billowed as water turned to ice encasing several affected structures in kensington. fire officials say the three alarm blaze began at a bottom floor shoe store. but flames spread to the roof and eventually led to a roof collapse. the residential units at the top were unoccupied. commissioner darryl sawyer says containment took hours and the tapout time is still ):jlñuncertain. >> because where it is located it is going to be difficult because we're talking about a two story, 5500 building large
building, and it was a commercial building and you have clothing and stuff inside. so it is going to be difficult to actually get the total fire out. >> reporter: service along septa's market frankford elevated subway was suspended due to fire operations. passengers crammed into neighboring stations, shuttle buses helped with the backlog. frigid temperatures froze some hydrants forcing firefighters to improvise. >> we switched to another hydrant. the water department did a great job coming out, and after servicing the hydrants we got service. >> reporter: the commissioner says during routine checks and surveys of the hydrants helped them know where to go to get water quickly. you hear the train up box, service is restored. but it is not stopping at the york dauphin station. we're live in frankford this morning, jesse gary nbc 10 news. back to that news conference in delaware about the amber
alert. >> -- the bright red suv, possibly a ford explorer. we're working closely with the federal bureau of investigations the u.s. attorney general's office the delaware attorney general's office and many local and state agencies as we attempt to locate michael or elinor trotta or both of them. michael is last known address of new castle delaware. he is not there. neither is the little girl. michael's last known adress was in the area of a rest stop in mount laurel new jersey. michael trotta is described as 43-year-old caucasian male 5'8", approximately weighing 160 pounds balding with a scruffy beard and mustache. he was last seen wearing all black clothing. michael is considered armed and dangerous. he has warrants for his arrest stemming from a previous assault on february 15th involving elinor's mother. there are current warrants for michael's arrest stemming from yesterday, which includes reckless endangering and carjacking. elinor trotta is described as a
3-year-old caucasian female weighing approximately 60 pounds with brown shoulder length hair she was last seen wearing a purple fluffy coat pink pants and disney frozen sneakers. we have expanded the amber alert which includes other states to explore all possible destinations. there are known locations throughout the united states and we're searching all of them for any connections that may help us locate elinor. as with all incidents involving a child, we're deeply concerned for her safety and we're doing everything humanly possible to bring her back. as a chief of police we're going to go to all lengths to find her. as a father i think michael trotta has an opportunity to bring this girl back turn himself in and it will be easier to navigate the waters ahead if he brings her back safe. i'd like to invite jack lev of the fbi, our partners in delaware, who are helping us find this little girl. jack? >> thank you, sir. good afternoon.
just want to bring this to your attention. the fbi is fully engaged in this mission, with the new castle county pd. we're covering leads here in delaware and outside of delaware. and we're working towards the safe resolution in bringing this young lady and her father home. that's it for me. thank you. >> can we ask questions now? >> and we're just listening to a news conference about the whereabouts in the amber alert for 3-year-old -- for a 3-year-old little girl in new castle county elinor trotta. her father is also missing with her. there is a warrant out for his arrest. the fbi is also involved and engaged with the new castle police department in the search for them. and this is also a live look from skyforce10 as it flies to more breaking news in stafford township, in ocean county where we are told now that there has been a -- the house fire there, following a gas leak. that house exploded. this is on route 9 and oak
avenue. we're learning new details in the past few minutes. we're now told that three people are injured, one of those injured is said to be very serious. least one victim is a gas company worker. no firefighters have been hurt. a number of homes in the area are being evacuated. and as you can see here skyforce10 is on its way. we'll bring you a live report when they get set up. an elementary school in allentown is closed after a fire broke out inside this building. it started around 7:00 a.m. at cleveland elementary school before any students showed up for the day. no one there was hurt. and fire destroyed a home in gloucester county. this is along back creek road in swedesboro. no one was hurt. firefighters say no one was home at the time. crews had to bring in heated tankers to fight the fire because it was so cold outside. we're going to head back to that news conference and listen in. >> and can you elaborate on how
the agreement is currently -- >> no. >> for elinor a custody dispute? >> not answering that. >> does mr. trotta have a criminal record prior to the previous assault? >> we're focused on the current charges. >> are there prior charges? >> right now, the charges that we're concerned with are the charges involving the domestic on the february 15th, the charges from yesterday, and our focus is on this little girl and getting her back. >> so not commenting on any possible prior arrests, correct? >> no because it is not indicative of the situation. >> you say he was known to police? >> yes. don, would you like to come up and say something? [ inaudible ] can't answer that right now. >> what was the question? >> any threats -- he did make a threat to his daughter? >> this is the mother and the little girl. >> my name is dawn bakus.
please bring her home. she doesn't have any clothes with her or her toys. or anything that she likes. we have a routine every night and she just out of the routine and my heart is broken. and i'm just begging anybody who knows where she is or him or whoever that is helping to please bring her home. i don't care how he does it, just bring her home. or call somebody and just let us know where she is. >> what would you like to say to your -- >> just that mommy loves you. i just want her to come home. that's all. >> thank you for your time. we're asking everyone and anyone with any information to make contact with new castle county police as we desperately try to find this young girl. thank you.
>> just heard emotional plea from the mother of that 3-year-old little girl for her little girl to be returned safely back and now we're taking another live look at skyforce10 as it is flying to breaking news in stafford township ocean county, where there is a house explosion because of a gas leak. that house is en route 9 and oak avenue. we're learning some details here in the last few minutes. three people we're told have been injured. one of those is said to be very serious. at least one of those victims, those three victims is a gas company worker. no firefighters have been hurt. a number of homes in the area have been evacuated. and we'll continue to follow this story. we'll bring it to you as we get information. we'll be right back.
we're staying on top of breaking news story this morning. a number of them. police say 3-year-old elinor trotta was taken from new castle county, her home by her father michael trotta. we just heard a few moments ago a tearful plea from her mother dawn farcas is her name. the car they believe this little girl was in was found earlier this morning. less than a mile away from the abduction scene. police believe trotta is driving a bright red suv, possibly a ford explorer. investigators say he could be headed to new jersey new york or the state of ohio.
and another live look from skyforce10 as it flies to more breaking news in stafford township in ocean county where we're told there is a house explosion following a gas leak there. that house is on route 9 and oak avenue. and we have just gathered some new information in the last few minutes, three people are injured. one of those injured is said to be very serious. at least one of those victims is a gas company worker. no firefighters have been hurt. a number of homes in the area are being evacuated, but as skyforce10 gets closer we're seeing the smoke emanating from that house fire. and breaking news from southern california now where authorities say at least 30 people have been hurt in a crash involving a commuter train and a truck northwest of los angeles. the collision toppled three of the train's passenger cars on to their sides. a fourth car derailed. you're looking at the trains
now. of course, stay with nbc 10 and our mobile app for updates on this breaking news. the secretary of veterans affairs is apologizing for making a claim about his military service. he now says was not true. bob mcdonald told a homeless veteran he served in the military special forces during a segment that aired on cbs last month. he now says that was inaccurate and apologized yesterday. he says he remains committed to reforming the va. the veterans affair website says mcdonald is an army veteran who completed ranger training. president obama chose him to take over the scandal plagued va last year. now your nbc 10 first alert weather with chief meteorologist glenn "hurricane" schwartz. >> just an incredible morning in the weather department. we set many record low temperatures during the morning including several places below zero. we have got a brief break from the frigid air.
it is just going to be plain cold. we're also tracking the threat of snow for parts of the area especially down to the south. we're not seeing much wind today. and that helps a little bit. the temperature not going up very much. it is 18 degrees. the wind is dead calm. we're 8 degrees colder than we were at this time yesterday. 6:00 a.m. monday 34 degrees, 14 by midnight 8 at 6:00 a.m. up to 18 degrees right now and we're only going into the mid-20s during the day today. it is 17 in kennett square. 13 degrees in trenton. and farther to the north and west allentown is 12. they got down to 8 below zero. smashing a record. reading, 15. they got down to 3 below zero. atlantic city airport, 18. dover, 17. newark 19 degrees at the
moment. and what we're going to be seeing this afternoon, getting into the 20s. it is not going to cool down as much tonight. that's still very cold air for this time of the year really for any time of the winter. but not as bitter cold. now, this one area of wintry weather to our south, this one is going to stay to our south. but as we look back out in the southwestern states this is the one to watch as we go into thursday morning. there is 6:00 a.m. here's some of the latest computer models showing the outer edge of this storm, just grazing parts of our area. so delaware south jersey, you had some snow possibly accumulating snow that's a fairly substantial storm. so if if comes closer there could be some significant snow and enough to shovel or even
plow down toward the shore. but not for today. sunny and bitter cold highs in the low to mid-20s. very light winds. and during the day, tomorrow we have a brief break. look at that. temperature gets above freezing even though that's about ten degrees below average. there is the snow on thursday. south and east delaware extreme south jersey it is possible it could spread all the way into the philadelphia area if the track of that storm goes a little bit to the left. and if it goes to the left and philadelphia gets a little snow that means atlantic city and wildwood and sussex county delaware would get a lot more snow. and then look at that bitter cold again, later in the week. and a chance of a warmer system coming in by sunday night. another live look from skyforce10 as it -- it has come upon this house that exploded
because of a gas leak that happened. this happened approximately 10:00 this morning. this is stafford township in ocean county. this happened about 10:00 a.m. this morning. and this is on route 9 and oak avenue. among the details we are just learning about in last few minutes is that three people were injured. apparently there was a gas crew working on this house when it exploded about 10:00 this morning. new jersey gas is apparently there on the scene, trying to solve the problem. but you see this house is basically gone. you see flames there, and trees burning. but no sign of the house. this house explosion happened about 10:00 this morning. stemmed from a gas leak. three people we understand are injured. one of those is a gas worker. and these scenes you're seeing
live from skyforce10 we have a couple of different crews that are on their way there. christine maddela, and ted greenberg is on his way. i'm not sure whether ted is on the ground or in skyforce10. ted is on the ground. he's on his way there. as soon as he gets established, we'll hear from ted. we're trying to get a phone interview with ted as he makes his way to this location. if there was a house there, it completely has been demolished and since gratedisintegrated, burned to the ground, perhaps, the powerful force of this gas explosion. we haven't heard if anybody has died. however, three people have been injured. one of those is a gas worker. we're told also that no firefighters have been injured in this house. we're trying to track down as well the residents of this home where they may have been when this house exploded. this is in stafford township ocean county.
ted greenberg, our jersey shore bureau reporter is now on the phone with us. ted, tell us where you are and how close you are to this house explosion? >> vai we're a couple of blocks away from it. we just arrived on the scene in stafford township now. i know you're taking a look from skyforce10 above the area on oak road and you can see there is still active fire a lot of debris scattered all over the place. as you have been saying three injuries were reported so far. one very serious. one of those victims is a gas company worker. as you can imagine, this is a very active scene right now, police have closed off many roads, so we're trying to make our way to the scene to get as close as possible. we'll also stay a safe distance away. people are outside their homes, many people in this area say that they felt the explosion. it was just that intense.
and, betweenagain we're trying to get as close it the scene as possible. when we get there, we'll be back in touch with you. >> stay with us. i'm looking at video. i'm looking at pictures from skyforce10. it is a live picture. you don't have access to this i'm sure but as i'm looking at it i'm looking directly into the foundation of this home. there is not anything there. there is debris scattered all over the place. the adjoining house, i don't know if that's part of the home or part of the structure, part of the same home or adjoining home but perhaps a neighbor possibly a neighbor. that house is also damaged. it is still standing but it is also damaged. and there is debris not only from the home that exploded but possibly parts of that house itself on the roof and maybe something else there, a garage. but there is major damage there, ted. i don't know -- i don't know how closely you'll be able to get to
this how close you'll be able to get to the structure. there are new jersey gas crews on the ground there. best i can make out. and there are perhaps some firefighters on the ground as well. but -- >> right. we know that there was a gas leak reported in the area around 10:00 this morning before this explosion happened. and new jersey natural gas was working on that problem, was working to fix that gas main and fix that leak in the area of route 9 and oak avenue. and that's when obviously something was very wrong. and this explosion occurred. we're getting closer now, we're coming up on some police cars and fire trucks. we're pretty close to the scene, quite a few neighbors are standing around outside as well. quite a sight to see. i can see the white smoke rising into the air above the trees. so we're getting -- we're getting quite a bit closer. new jersey natural gas crews are here as well as you can imagine.
>> ted, if nobody was killed in this unfortunate accident it would be a miracle because there is debris strewn all over the place, wood and what not. i'm looking directly into the foundation or the basement of this home. it is just smoldering there. trees nearby are burning. it is quite remarkable how powerful that explosion must have been to have just simply leveled an entire home there. >> absolutely. and, vai, we're, i think it is as close as we're going to get. we're going to set up for video and be back on the air with you on television in a few minutes. >> we have captain tom delain of the stafford township police. captain delain, are you on the phone? can you hear me? >> yes, i am. >> tell us exactly what you know and when this happened and any information you can share with
us, please. >> i believe theis is a single family home located at 59 oak avenue in the cedar run section of stafford. 8:55 a.m. this morning, we did receive a report of a gas leak condition. new jersey gas did respond, approximately 10:30 there was an explosion to that residence along with a fire. crews, gas crews at this point are still attempting to shut off the gas main. the area has been evacuated. and we have a number of homes that have been evacuated as well. >> captain delain, this is captain tom delain through stafford police. can you tell us about the residents of the home. i assume they were not home at the time this happened? >> i came out to the scene -- facts, i'm still gathering information at this point. i don't know as far as the whereabouts of the residents of
the home at this point. >> captain delain, can you tell me how many homes in the area have been evacuated? >> we have evacuated homes from the intersection of route 9 and oak avenue all the way up to perkins lane and over oak avenue. i would estimate there is probably somewhere in the ballpark of 75 homes in that area. >> 75 homes. do you have any estimation how many people approximately were home and where they are? >> i do not have that information. >> okay, thank you captain. are you folks shutting off roads and where are you shutting off access to this area? >> route 9 is a major north/south corridor running through the area. it is currently closed to all traffic, both northbound and southbound at the intersection of mckinley avenue and route 9 and stock road and route 9. i urge everyone to avoid that
area if at all possible. >> can you also give us any information if you have any information on the three injured? we're told one of them is very serious and is a -- perhaps a gas worker. >> yeah i've been advised there were three injuries. i don't know the extent of it. nor do i know the breakdown as to gas workers or civilians at this point. i can't give you that information. >> captain tom delain, we appreciate your time with us. and thank you for your service and giving us a few minutes on the phone. >> no problem. thank you very much. >> skyforce10 continues to hover over the scene in stafford township. we're looking at neighbors' homes who have mostly been evacuated. some 75 homes. we don't know how many people that accounts for, but they have all been evacuated from this area because of a house explosion that happened about approximately 10:00 this morning when there were gas workers work on a gas leak when suddenly the
home that they were working on exploded and three people have been injured. one of them seriously hurt. one is a gas worker. no -- firefighters have been injured in this. ted greenberg just arrived. ted, tell us how far you are -- how close you are and what you know what you gathered so far this morning. >> reporter: well, vai, we just got up here, very close to the scene, on oak avenue. and the scene is actually right around the corner from where i'm standing. this is where the roadblock is. we just saw barnegat township fire department go down the street. that's the ki-moon tycommunity north of here. melissa lewis lives close to where the explosion occurs. what did you see, what did you feel when this all happened? >> my mother-in-law texted me
telling me it was a main gas line break. i was getting on -- i have two children, i was getting all the stuff for the kids to get out of the house and get in my car to leave. when i was getting the bottles, everything together, my windows blew out in my house and i dropped and covered my daughter she was standing next to me. and i stood up and heard some screaming outside, and there were people being brought to the ambulance, and i went to go get out into my car to leave and they wouldn't let me start my car. so i walked down here and now here we are. >> reporter: you guys are okay? >> everybody is okay yeah. >> reporter: what did you see -- what did that house look like where the explosion happened right after it blew out your windows? >> i couldn't really see the house. but i saw pieces of house floating all over my yard and the insulation was all over the place, and you could see just the ambulances and people running around. and then there was a big flame coming from the house. it wasn't really -- i couldn't
really see directly but it was bad. >> reporter: something -- what is going through your head as you're experiencing this? >> fear that another explosion is going to happen and that you know that somebody is dead or somebody got seriously injured and hopefully everybody is okay. i know that maybe two people were injured and taken away. >> reporter: we know that three people were injured. a gas company worker we believe. and they had been working on this gas main break, right? >> the ambulance was in my driveway all morning and there was a cop parked on my lawn. and i kept seeing them coming in and out and in and out and the cop left so i assumed everything was okay by that point and my mother-in-law texted me it was the main gas line and to get out. >> reporter: do you know if anybody was at home in the house where the explosion happened? >> i don't think so. i don't think any of the family members were home. i think it was just the workers,
the new jersey gas workers. so i'm praying for them and hoping they're all right. >> reporter: absolutely. we're glad you're okay. have you been told to evacuate shortly before this happened? i know the police had told us that there were some evacuations -- some people were asked to evacuate before the explosion happened. >> nobody came to my house. i was just doing it on my own because i have two small children, just in case as a precaution, i wanted to get out of there. it was grb it was close, if anything would have happened. >> reporter: was there any yelling or any indication something had gone wrong with them trying to fix the break before the explosion? >> no. not at all. there was -- i mean i saw a couple of cars coming and going and then i thought everything was okay because they had left. and then it happened and there wasn't any indication it was going to happen. i had no idea. >> reporter: how long would you say it was from the beginning of the leak the gas leak to this happening? >> i would say the gas leak i noticed the ambulance in my driveway, my sister left at
about 9:15 this morning, and then i saw the ambulance and i saw the police cars and everything. and then it happened probably i would say two hours after that i don't even know. i don't even know. she left at 9:15. whenever it happened after that. >> reporter: i imagine the odor of natural gas was very strong at that point. we can still smell it a little bit lingering -- >> i noticed it in my house this morning and i said to my sister do you smell that? i was going to call the gas company if it didn't go away thinking it was my house. i saw the ambulance and then i saw the cop cars and then i saw the new jersey gas and i had to assume it was something else going on. >> reporter: melissa lewis, thank you for talking with us. we're glad you're okay. thank you. vai, we'll continue to gather information here check in with the first responders police fire crews on the scene. again, we're right around the corner from where this explosion happened on oak avenue here in stafford township. you can see it is still a very active scene. i know that you're seeing quite a dramatic view from skyforce10
from above the scene. we're seeing that white smoke rising here above the trees and also going to be talking with other people who live in this neighborhood, find out what they saw and what they heard and how this is affecting them. live in stafford township ted greenberg, nbc 10 news. >> thank you. we'll let you go be a reporter and gather information while we pivot. we have a number of breaking news stories we're juggling here. an update on breaking news the mother of a 3-year-old girl abducted by her father made an emotional plea for her daughter's return. the pair had been missing since late last night. an amber alert in three states is in effect. elinor trotta weighs about 60 pounds shoulder length brown hair, last seen wearing a purple puffy coat she had on pink pants and disney frozen sneakers. police say elinor was taken by this man, her father michael trotta. he's about 5'8", 160 pounds he's balding and has a scruffy beard and mustache. he was last seen wearing all
black clothing and police believe the girl may be in danger. nbc 10 delaware bureau reporter tim furlong is live in new castle where a news conference just wrapped up. give us an update. >> reporter: vai, we'll hear from mom in a second. as you said, they wrapped up that news conference here a few moments ago. you saw some of it on our air earlier in the newscast. confirmed that last night police were called to the schoolside apartments in new castle for a domestic assault. they arrived to find a young woman saying her daughter had been taken away by her father. that's when the amber alert was issued. police rk lookare looking for this man, mike atchael trotta traveling with his daughter elinor. police believe she could be in danger. police believe that they found his vehicle early on. you saw them towing it away live on television this morning. haven't given us details about a sighting of a report at a rest
stop on the new jersey turnpike in mount laurel new jersey last night. they believe that's the last place michael trotta was seen. they believe he's heading to new york where he has relatives. ohio has been mentioned. the fbi is working to help in other states as well. they're not going to give us all states they're work on not to hinder the investigation. this is all brutal for elinor's mother, as vai said her name is dawn. she spoke with us a short while ago. >> she doesn't have any clothes with her or her toys. or anything that she likes. we have a routine every night. and she is just out of the routine and my heart is broken. and i'm just begging anybody who knows where she is or him or whoever is helping him please bring her home. i don't care how he does it. just bring her home. >> reporter: and as you come back live these are the people you're looking for, michael trotta, considered armed and dangerous. if you see him, call 911. he has a warrant out for his arrest for allegedly all the saing elinor's mom earlier in
the month. an nbc 10 viewer sent us a craigslist posting where he talked about his failing relationship with dawn. he was on craig zslist looking for money to fight for his daughter. if you see michael trotta, if you see that little girl at a rest stop, anywhere where you're hearing my voice, call 911. don't approach him. he's considered armed and dangerous. we're live inside the new castle county police department tim furlong, nbc 10 news. at the continue to follow this breaking news story and we'll get another look here from skyforce10 hovering over this house explosion in ocean county stafford township. this happened about 10:00 this morning as gas crew was working on a gas main leak when that house exploded. three people are injured. one is said to be serious. one of them happens to be a gas
this happened about 10:00 this morning. and this is in the area of route 9. and you see the home there, that's a live picture you're looking at. it has been completely disintegrated. you just see the foundation of the home there. ted greenberg is live on the scene. and we'll get a report from him in just a moment. but there are three people who have been injured, one seriously, one of them was a gas worker. let's bring in glenn "hurricane" schwartz here. i thought it was interesting that the resident who was speaking to ted greenberg told ted that the police would not let her start her vehicle before as she was being evacuated. i suspect it is -- i can only imagine because they didn't want the ignition to cause any problems. >> still gas in the area in the
air. and the difference between today and yesterday, when we had that tanker crash and explosion is in the wind. yesterday, we had a lot of wind that was blowing the smoke away from the sight of the accident. in today's case things are very calm. this is toward the shore. this is just a few miles inland off of long beach island. in this case very little wind. you see the ocean, how calm it is right now, certainly compared to yesterday. what wind there is is blowing inland. so there would be less people and less homes that would be affected by this. the wind speed, in mount holly, the nearest airport, only three miles an hour but it is out of the east. the temperature is 18 degrees and we have got that fire symbol where we are seeing that -- saw that explosion.
now, in the case of gas, it would actually probably be better if there was a stronger wind because then it would disperse the gas more. so if you don't have the wind the gas is just sitting there, right over the same area and it will take longer and longer for it to disperse in the area where this explosion actually occurred. the east wind would blow the gas into a fairly unpopulated part of new jersey and the people in the vicinity of the explosion would get a little bit of relief because some of the gas would be dispersed as it was blowing in the wind. so yesterday the strong wind made the situation worse because there were homes right near where the explosion was, and the wind was blowing the smoke right toward the homes. in this case it would be probably better if there was
some wind to disperse this gas that is obviously still in the air, if people can smell it. >> we'll bring in the mayor of stafford township. before i bring the mayor in let me give you more information we're getting, two people have been transported to atlantic city medical center. we're now getting reports that four people have been injured. all four are gas company employees. all four injured are gas company employees. and two have been sent to atlantic city medical center. mayor, thank you very much. can you hear me? >> i can hear you. >> i'm guessing you have been briefed. tell us what you know. >> what we know is that there was a report of a gas odor in the area this morning. the gas company responded to try and identify the source of the odor. due to that gas odor the homeowners down to route 9 were
all evacuated. and while the gas company was trying to isolate the source of the gas leak an explosion occurred. the resulting explosion, of course, as everything you reported, there were injuries and the house has been disintegrated. we are right now keeping everybody out of the area. the gas company wants to get that main gas line shut off. if you could just let people know that if they do have any strong odor of gas, in their area in their home especially if it is in their home please open all your windows. report it to the police. and leave the area. we are, as i said trying to get everything secured right now and trying to make sure that everybody will be safe. >> mayor, let me cover some basic facts here. is there still a threat there of any other explosions? and secondly my follow-up question to that have you spoken to the residents of this
home that exploded? >> i have not spoken to the residents of the home that exploded. however, there is always a possibility because a gas leak is still ongoing. we have not -- the gas company has not shut it down yet. >> we spoke to captain delany from your police department a little earlier and he told us that 75 homes have been evacuated. do you know where those people have been sent? and where they are? >> no we do not. we're assuming they went with friends or family. >> mayor, we appreciate your time. and can you share with us what your office and what your folks are doing to help these people who are for the time being out of their homes? >> well, of course the primary objective now is to assist the gas company in every way possible to get the gas leak isolated and shut down get that pipeline shut off. the people that have left their
homes, we'rethey should contact the police department contact us and we'll get them any help they need. the most important thing is to get the problem isolated get the gas shut off and make sure the area is safe. as your meteorologist mentioned, there is no wind down there to speak of. so the gas is kind of hanging in there, and until it dissipates more, it is considered a very dangerous area. >> mayor, one final question here. a report is that four people have been injured, two have been sent to the atlantic city medical center. have you been briefed on the injured and the injuries and give us any information on how serious they are and what their condition is? >> i understand one is extremely critical. they were giving him cpr at the scene. and the other three are not as critical. but beyond that i'm not at liberty to really discuss that. >> speaking to mayor john
spotifora from stafford township. we wish you well and your residents there. i know you care a great deal for them. >> thank you. >> let's head now -- let's see if we can bring in ted greenberg on the ground and had a little bit of time to do some information gathering. ted, what can you tell us? >> reporter: well vai, right now i'm joined by sue aljo you live down street basically on bog hollow court around the corner from where this explosion happened on oak avenue. you're a teacher at stafford township intermediate school. tell me what happened when this explosion occurred. >> i wasn't here i was in my classroom, and my principal came to get me in my classroom to tell me that there was a gas leak in my area. and he wasn't exactly sure where i lived. so i came home and the street was blocked off here. i found out when i got home my husband and my son were there and they said the house blew up.
it had already exploded. and this was a brand-new house that the people that own reynolds landscaping bought and redid, and just finished it in the fall. >> so basically it was new construction. and now obliterated by the explosion. >> gone, totally gone. i thought there was a news channel 6 news was on and they had the choppers up there. and it is gone. there is like a hole in the ground. totally gone. >> we thank you for being here on nbc 10. >> thank you. >> you are able to get back to your house, right now? >> yes. >> no evacuations. >> no they haven't evacuated us yet. i was surprised that didn't happen since we're about a football field away from that house. so, yeah so i'm just here waiting to see if they're going to evacuate us so that i can help. i mean there is a lot of animals in these houses back here and people are at work.
so, yeah. >> reporter: we were just hearing from the mayor talking to us here on nbc 10 that new jersey natural gas has not been able to stop the flow of gas at least not at last check. so we still do have a situation, i can imagine, a bit unnerving for you folks. >> yes. i'm quite surprised if the gas is still flowing then why are we still here? but -- >> reporter: all right. we're glad you and your family are okay. >> thank you so much. >> reporter: we'll continue to talk to folks who live in this neighborhood and we'll be back with you soon. >> all right. thank you. the developments in the house near stafford township ocean county and amber alert issued in new castle county delaware for the missing father and 3-year-old daughter. stay with us. and also stay in touch on the nbc 10 app. we'll be right back.
all right, we're not going to take a break now. we're going to bring in glenn "hurricane" schwartz, our chief meteorologist, to give us an update on the weather. glenn? >> thanks vai. it has been bitter cold out there. we have seen some record low temperatures and we're not going to be seeing record lows tonight. but just amazing, even below zero in some places. we have a brief break coming tomorrow. but we are tracking snow for the possibility for part of the area. a lot of sunshine out there now. 18 degrees. 8 degrees colder than it was this time yesterday. and these were the records, 1 degree in philadelphia. and it was 8 below zero in allentown this morning for a record. 3 below zero in reading. 7 officially in philadelphia.
did not break a record. wilmington tied a record as did other portions of the area. now, mount pocono was 15 below. right now, we're in the teens across just about the entire area. 10 in mount pocono. this system is producing snow in north carolina to the south. that's one staying to the south. this one may not, though. this is out in arizona, and new mexico. nice little spin in the atmosphere there. and it is going to track well south of our area. but this is going to be a bigger storm than the one that is moving offshore now. and so it is going to have a larger area precipitation including snow on the northwestern edge which very well could target southern delaware and extreme south jersey. this is thursday morning. potentially during the morning rush, and look how close it comes. this particular model even
brings some flakes all the way up to the philadelphia area. now, if we get some snow in philadelphia, we're going to be getting accumulating snow at the shore. and in southern delaware. whatever we get, in the delaware valley here i-95 area there is going to be more to the south. there is no doubt about that. and no doubt that it would be snow and we're not dealing with any kind of rain threat with this particular system. so for the rest of the day, it is sunny and bitter cold high temperatures in the low to mid-20s. but at least we don't have much wind. it is a very light wind day. tonight, the atmosphere is trying to warm up. so we're not going to be seeing these below zero temperatures. it is going to be in the teens in the philadelphia area. but single digits probably in some of the areas that were below zero ñ%5?k morning. still extremely cold tomorrow morning, but not the record cold that we saw this morning.
and brief break in the afternoon with 37 degrees. finally get above freezing. it will melt a little snow and ice, which then refreezes tomorrow night as we get another blast of cold air. and on thursday, in the morning, that's when we see that snow in southern delaware and extreme south jersey and we'll keep an eye on it to see how close it comes to philadelphia. new computer information coming in over the next few hours of it, update on this coming up at 4:00. >> thank you, glenn. we follow two major breaking news stories this morning. first, the amber alert issued in new castle delaware for this little 3-year-old girl elinor trotta is her name. her father michael trotta 43 years old, they may be in an suv, perhaps a red ford explorer. she's about 60 pounds wearing a purple puffy coat with pink pants and frozen disney
sneakers. he is 5'8", about 160 pounds, last seen wearing all black clothing. he's balding, has a scruffy beard and a mustache. michael trotta. and the other breaking news story we're following throughout the morning is in stafford township, ocean county, where a house has exploded about 10:00 this morning. as crews were working to -- on a gas main break at this home completely destroyed as you see here. this is a live picture from skyforce10. our information is that four people have been injured. two of them sent to atlantic city medical center. we'll continue to follow this and update it on nbc 10's app. and tune in today at 4:00 where we give you more information and the latest details on this story. and, of course stay with nbc 10 and our mobile app for updates on all of these breaking news stories.
>> will: your daddies are gonna take you to the park. >> paul: i can't wait to put you on the carousel, princess. >> sonny: no! ari, honey. it's daddy. no. no! >> kate: hi. is he okay? [cell phone rings] >> will: come on. shh. yeah? >> paul: will. how are you? >> will: how do you think? >> paul: i guess lousy. that's why i wanted to call and check. >> will: paul, i slept with you and you're in love with my husband. the hell am i supposed to do with that? >> eric: seriously.